Sculptor selected to create MLK statue in Atlanta killed in crash

The crypt of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King as seen on May 2, 2015. (Photo by Todd DeFeo)

ATLANTA — An apparent drunken driver struck and killed the Henry County sculptor selected to create a statue of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for the Georgia State Capitol, according to published reports.

Andy Davis was thrown from his bike after he was struck by a pickup truck in Henry County, WSB-TV reported. A 20-year-old man has been charged with DUI.

State officials announced last month they chose Davis to create a statue of King. Among Davis’ many works are sculptures of music legend Ray Charles and Chick-fil-A founder Truett Cathy.

“One thing that we know, is that he would want everyone to think on his life works, his wild, loving Heart, and his Heroism that was so apparent in his barefooted steps,” Davis’ family said in a statement.

The statue was authorized as part House Bill 1080, which was passed during the 2014 legislative session. Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal tapped state Rep. Calvin Smyre, D-Columbus, earlier this year to head up the effort to erect a sculpture of King.

The statue was slated to stand on the northeast quadrant of the Capitol grounds overlooking Liberty Plaza. The project is on hold for now.

“I’m deeply saddened by the death of Andy Davis. This tragedy is not only a loss for his family, but for the Henry County community and our state,” Deal said in a statement, according to WAGA-TV. “He leaves behind a legacy of excellent work, and I regret that will not include a statue on our Capitol grounds that many generations of Georgians would have admired.”

About the author

Todd DeFeo

Todd DeFeo loves to travel anywhere, anytime, taking pictures and notes. An award-winning reporter, Todd revels in the experience and the fact that every place has a story to tell. He is owner of The DeFeo Groupe and also edits The Travel Trolley and Railfanning.org.